When Ronaldo could debut for Al-Nassr: Date, time, where to watch in India and more
Al-Nassr's new hero Cristiano Ronaldo made his way to Riyadh on Monday, and fans are eager to see the Portuguese legend in action on Saudi Arabian soil. Here's all you need to know about CR7's debut:
Since Cristiano Ronaldo's bombshell move to Al-Nassr last week, all eyes have been on the Saudi Pro League fixtures to see when the Portuguese legend will likely make his debut in the Middle Eastern nation.
After leaving Manchester United by mutual consent in early December due to an explosive TV conversation with Piers Morgan, Ronaldo discovered he had no takers for the Champions League and decided to join the wealthy Saudi Pro League.
The Portuguese talisman, who arrived in Riyadh on Monday, was welcomed with a warm reception and will be unveiled in front of 30,000 fans on Tuesday. However, the club still needs to provide information on Ronaldo's debut match officially.
Al-Nassr's next fixture is against Al-Ta'ee on Thursday, January 5, at 8:30 PM IST, which is close to the date of CR7's arrival in the Gulf nation, and hence it is unlikely that he will feature in the clash. However, some fans believe that the crowd may get a glimpse of the five-time Ballon d'Or winner, who would be raring to start this next chapter after a disastrous stint at the World Cup 2022 in Qatar.
Ronaldo has not played since Portugal's 1-0 loss to Morocco at the Qatar World Cup 2022 and will need some time to train and acclimatise himself to the Gulf Nation's playing conditions. Hence, fans of Al-Nassr may have to wait until the club's clash against Al-Shabab on January 14, 11:00 PM IST, to see the former Manchester United striker take the field. With Al Nassr now leading the Pro League and Al Shabab in the second position, the clash makes it a mouth-watering potential debut for the 37-year-old icon.
In the upcoming weeks, Ronaldo could play another significant encounter against Al-Ittihad in the Saudi Super Cup semifinal on January 25, 11:30 PM IST.
Surprise Ronaldo vs Messi clash in the pipeline?
However, one potential game would significantly surpass any domestic contest. Covid-19 forced the cancellation of the Riyadh Season Cup, a significant friendly game, in January 2022. Paris Saint-Germain (PSG), Ligue 1 champions, was scheduled to play a combined XI of players from Al Nassr and Al Hilal. This means that Ronaldo could face off against his arch-rival Lionel Messi and other PSG stars like Kylian Mbappe and Neymar.
The game is expected to occur in January 2023, with the 19th being the most likely date. A new date has yet to be confirmed for the match.
PSG will play no games between January 16 and January 30. Al-Nassr play on the 15th, 22nd, and 26th of January and February 4.
Where to watch Ronaldo's Al-Nassr debut in India?
Nine-time Saudi Pro League champions Al-Nassr have had a brilliant start to the ongoing campaign. The defending champions are on top of the table with 26 points from 11 games, followed by Al-Shabab and Al-Ittihad with 25 and 24 points, respectively. However, both teams have played one match less than Al-Nassr.
Securing the services of legendary striker Ronaldo will give Al-Nassr a massive boost in their title defence. Fans of both the club and the Portuguese talisman would be raring to see the superstar in action.
In India, unfortunately, no official broadcasters have the rights to telecast the Saudi Pro League 2022-23 on television. However, the league's live streaming is available for Indian audiences.
Where to watch LIVE STREAM: Shahid-MBC
Subscription charges: 13.99 USD per month (1141.13 INR) or 99.99 USD annually (8286.26 INR)